Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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What a phony Ph.D. might get you

Paul Sperry tells an outrageous tale of phony Ph.D.’s from non-universities, important federal positions held, promotions offered. Lies, cheating, arrogance. The only thing missing is sex, well, maybe that’s there too, indirectly, think White House, Lewinsky era. Fun read, albeit a bit disheartening. Also see this on the so-called Dr. Callahan. (via Arts & Letters Daily)

Discussions - 2 Comments

This is a huge problem, and we will only see the tip of the iceburg. The dangerous question is: If these people have fake degrees why are they getting promoted? (let’s assume no one knows the degrees are fake)

If we say that they are capable workers and that promotions are based on ability then the issue of fake degrees in my opionion becomes less severe.

After all better a better worker gets promoted with a fake degree than a lesser one with a real one.

The truth of the matter might be that people are promoted based on degrees alone or a paper trail of "accomplishments" or the strengh of a resume, irrespective of performance, or that performance itself is capped on a points system requiring a degree to advance (as is the case in the military). Not only should we worry about fake degrees but also degree’s that are given out easily by accredited schools. Do these degree’s really mean anything?

Take for example the Army points system that gives 100 points for a college degree and 200 points for "Army Education." The 200 points for Army Education can be earned the hard way: Airborne, Airassult, SPF, Scuba, Pathfinder or if you get your hands on enough disks you can get the tests answers for DA exam numbers whose questions don’t change, only perhaps the order, and within 6 months you can max your points and make Sergeant. Granted it does take some work to cheat, and in an odd way it shows innitiative or the desire to proggress in the Army, and you might absorb some new information in the process of cheating, but still... every point earned this way helps to inflates the number of points needed for an MOS identifier in a particular month, which in turn prevents people who did not cheat from being promoted. On the Officer side the requirement of a masters degree to advance past Major penalizes those officers who are deployed constantly to Iraq while giving those who stay back and take classes an advantage. You start to suspect that officers in the ranks below Major want to stay back and get degrees whiles those in position to get a star want the brigade be deployed.

You can’t hate the players for playing the game, you have to wonder about the rules and policies that permit and even sometimes encourage such diseconomies.

But in the end maybe it is about how well they do the job(or the limits of management of knowing such a thing) A key component of how you know they are doing a good job is what is reported by supervisors, as long as you get in "good" with your supervisors no questions will be asked. If on the other hand you are as onerous as this Dr. Laura, someone eventually is going to get dirt on you.

Is a certain amount of degree fraud optimal, in that going after all degree fraud would rock the boat and get rid of people who actually are most able?

Does the problem correct itself because those who can’t establish "little platoons" in the work force(i.e. fit in to the working environment) get found out, while those who can hang-in do so?

Maybe such things are simply left hanging as a means of whipping people into shape, is this optimal? Such selective enforcement of regulations is used often in the military, permiting commanders a greater leway in dealing with situations. Sometimes it isn’t about the paper, either regulations, laws or degrees but about the people behind the scenes that know people and enforce such things. Was the computer coding error negligence and incomptence? Or was it purposeful with the fact that she has no real degrees simply perfect cover for the possible truth that she was actually competent? How else did she constantly get promoted?

I whole heartedly agree with anonymous. It should be the experience and not the paper, but with my current position, I was told that with all my experience that I would not be promoted because I did not have a degree. They said that when I got my degree, the day I graduated, that I would be promoted. I mean, what is that? Ok, I can do the job, but the paper has to tell them that. Let’s say that I slept my way through college and did a lot of favors for a lot of "C’s" and got an associate’s degree, does that now mean that I deserve the promotion better then before I became a whore? HHmmmm. It really burns me up. Needless to say, I looked into the degree mills, it is the same thing and if all they want is a paper, then they got the paper. Companies drive people to do what they have to do to survive. Basic instinct of Living, don’t you agree?

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